Northwest Fresno nursery shuts down to make room for high-speed rail

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Highway City in northwest Fresno is making way for high-speed rail. The construction project shutting down another local business Sunday.

Loaded trolleys are carting away the last signs of life from Riverside Nursery where a longtime community staple is making way for a jungle of concrete and steel.

"It's just one of those things they call progress, I call it a bureaucratic mess," Barry Crosson from Madera County said.

The nursery lies directly in the path of California's high-speed rail project. For the past several months, customers like the Crosson's have watched as the owner scrambled to find a replacement site.

"I'm really heartbroken, every year I'd come here and I'd replace my plants," Carolyn Voith said.

With the September 24 deadline from high-speed rail fast approaching and no place to go, the business was forced to hold a closeout sale Sunday. For many, it's not easy to let go.

"This is senseless," Voith said. "It's happening to them, and I really wish they could have gone on because they had a beautiful business."

Sam Sapien's property butts right next to the nursery. He's hoarding plants, preparing to build a barrier between himself and his new high-speed rail neighbor.

"We never had to worry about the noise because all the plants would screen it, now that he is gone, we have to buy his plants and screen everything ourselves," he said.

Employees are unsure if they'll ever reopen. But if they do, their customers will be waiting.
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